Mr. Speaker, 17 years ago I watched my father vote in Canada's first Senate election. It brought him joy to cast a ballot in that pivot of history.
I have been in Bert Brown's living room, the place where Bert and his wife Alice held the first meeting to promote a triple E Senate all those decades ago. I remember working on democratic reform as one of my earliest files as a parliamentarian. Bert and I worked on the elected Senate action team. We put the heat on Senator Andy Thompson for being an absentee senator, to the point where his colleagues castigated him and he was forced from the upper chamber.
Bert has fought for an elected Senate since the 1980s, and finally after all these years we have a Prime Minister promoting a bill to wholly elect the upper chamber. I was proud to see Bert Brown in our caucus meeting last week. It brings profound meaning to the long struggle over these many years together. I remember him carving the triple E in his neighbour's field north of Calgary in Kathryn, Alberta.
He is a prairie populist who has proved that persistence prevails. I welcome a man of conviction, Alberta's ambassador, Bert Brown.